Every organisation wants to make a great first impression. However all too often companies underestimate just how important the sound of their phone system is to their customers’ experience.
On-hold is about more than just making a good impression. When used well, it can be an incredibly effective marketing tool which can add significant business advantage.
On average, 20% of a caller’s time on the phone will be spent on-hold or in a queue. And it is clear that the last thing you want to do is waste that valuable customer interaction with dreaded clichés or generic statements. Couple this with BT and Cisco’s whitepaper ‘2021 Autonomous Customer’ finding that “…a voice call remains customers’ number one choice for contact when they can’t get an answer online. Phone usage has declined this year but only by a little.”
Ensuring Maximum Impact
So how do you use the on-hold space more effectively? What will add the greatest benefit to your business, and more importantly, to your customers?
First of all, review what you’ve currently got in place. Does your voice artist truly represent your brand? Does the tone and language match your other contact points? If your website uses a lot of modern terminology or conversational writing, does your on-hold? Also think about your social channels. Each of these should be consistent, so that when a customers picks up the phone, they immediately recognise who you are as a business.
Next, be clear about what it is you want to achieve. For example, you might want to boost sales, provide knowledge, or build your brand. You have a captive audience so make the most of it! Whilst they might switch off, or do something else whilst waiting, they’ll certainly be listening at the start. And if you create an engaging, or even entertaining, experience they’ll be sure to listen longer.
Therefore, put your biggest offers at the start. Having said that, you’ll want to be careful as the way you word your message also plays a huge part. Too pushy and you’ll lose your caller. Not enough benefit and their interest is gone. Also, if you’re too corporate your target audience will zone out or if you’re too familiar you might lose respect. With that in mind, the right script can build your brand, as mush as the wrong script can destroy it. And not doing anything is as bad as doing the wrong thing.
Some phone systems start your caller at the beginning of your production. Which allows you to create a journey for them. Each message can act as a stepping stone, building on the last one. Alternatively, some systems play the on-hold audio constantly, a bit like a river. Callers hop onto the river at random points. Therefore they’ll rarely hear the same message each time they call, which means you have to build a journey that reflects that experience.
Finally, put yourself in your callers’ shoes, listen to your on-hold experience and make sure it is relevant. Or, why not get us to do it for you?
Gower Studio is an intuitive new service which allows you to order prompts for IVR menus. In addition to music and marketing messages to play while in-queue or on-hold. It is also configured by you using a simple-to-use web portal.
Watch our short video on the link below to see how our service can help you:
For more information, please call us on 01792 762646 or send us an enquiry on our contact form here (opens in new tab).